The former congressman from El Paso talked to Texas Monthly around why he thinks he have the right to beat Greg Abbott, whether he regrets his 2020 presidential campaign, and whether his politics are as well liberal for Texas.
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September 23, 2021
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Nonetheless, it would certainly be a failure to entirely count out O’Rourke, who 2018 race against Cruz set the high-water note for a autonomous statewide challenger over the previous two decades. Last time that ran statewide, O’Rourke broke U.S. Senate fund-raising records. His project refreshed Texas Democrats favor nothing rather in their lengthy electoral drought, and also the turnout he inspired among Democrats and also independents assisted flip 2 seats in Congress and also a dozen in the state House—though Democrats to be unable to add to those benefit in 2020.
Also, the previous two years haven’t been good ones for Abbott. The state’s pandemic response and the failure of its energy grid in February have lugged the governor criticism from both sides. He will face primary difficulties from 2 aggressive candidates to his right: Don Huffines, a former state senator, and Allen West, the former chair the the state GOP.
Should the governor make it through those challenges, together expected, the best question the his race versus O’Rourke will be whether Abbott, in his zeal to keep former president Donald Trump’s endorsement and appease unrelenting criticism native those ~ above the right, cedes some of the center in Texas national politics that was as soon as securely his. Over the past year, dip by having repelled Democrat advances in 2020, Abbott has proudly signed conservative law that would have actually been unimaginable a couple of years ago. The signed a law opposed through 55 percent the Texans that permits any resides to lug a handgun without a permit or any instruction, and an abortion bill v an enforcement mechanism, opposed by 57 percent, that enables private citizens to sue anyone they believe helped someone acquire the procedure.
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Texas Monthly spoke through O’Rourke about why he determined to operation for governor, why he think the gyeongju is winnable, and whether that regrets his presidential bid. This interview has been lightly edited for length and also clarity.